I could use some advice from the true adventurers out there. I have used a regular backpack for the past 4 years and it has gone with me all over the West (and even in the Amazon jungles of Brazil) on my detecting adventures. Inside I carry food, water, first aid, extra coil, TP, and other essentials. I have strapped sleeping bags and gold pans to the outside. I have it ready to go for at least one or two nights sleeping in mild weather. But the miles have taken their toll.
For those of you who venture far from your vehicle into the bush, I would like to know what kind of pack you use. Pics and advice are welcome. I am looking for something that can carry 1-2 gallons of water, a sleeping bag, battery bank, possibly the ability to strap my detector and pick to it for long hikes, and either waterproof or with a rain cover. Price is not important. I have an old frame pack I could use but it is gigantic.
Colonel Dan's Detector Rack
Anyone who is into metal detecting knows what its like to pack your vehicle for a day in the field or at the beach. This is what my SUV looked like...and that was on a very organized day!
Two detectors, a shovel, a sand scoop, equipment bag and cooler
Not much room left for Miss Mary's suitcase or art equipment when she goes along. Not much usable space for anything else really except for a small area behind the passenger seat. I'm sure everyone has their own version of this load plan but you know the deal.
There had to be a better way. I experimented with different ideas that worked to some level of success but none that fit the primary Cavalry Principle of KISS. I wanted a system that was portable, i.e. easily and quickly installed in and removed from my SUV. It had to be solid and stable with some heft so my detectors could ride safe and sound without tipping over or sliding around back there. Secure vertical stacking seemed to be the solution for me. The question was how to do it.
I thought about several things I could build or re-purpose and finally settled on an unused truck gun rack. It was solidly built for my intended purpose, had rubber protection on the hooks to prevent damaging the detectors and had pre-drilled holes I could use for mounting it on a vertical frame. I decided to use 2x4s: easy to build with enough weight and heft to provide stability for my detectors.
I built a frame that was 20” in height, 24” in width with feet 8” long which prevents tipping over or sliding around when fully loaded with equipment. Padding on the back helps protect the sidewalls of my SUV and a layer on the feet adds an additional level of prevention against slipping.
My detectors finally have a safe place to ride—they're happy campers!
And my load plan now looks like this.
Much more available space for Miss Mary to use any way she likes! Life is good!
I’ve been sidelined without my prospecting rig for over a month, long story but the old 4.0 died and I’m waiting for a new engine being built by a shop back East. Chad Golen, of Golen Strokers is building a 4.6 stroker motor and a shop here in Vegas is putting it in and doing a bunch of other upgrades. While waiting with devils time on my hands I’ve been shopping for a little personal protection to pack with me on my excursions in the wilderness. I looked at a number of different guns and calibers and finally settled of a 10mm Glock 40 gen4 mos, this seemed to check a lot of boxes good for hunting in most states, very reliable, 15+1 rounds, been effective on bears in Alaska and lots of mods and upgrades are available. I just put a Trijicon SRO red dot on it and there’s a compensated KKM match barrel on order just for fun. I haven’t had a chance to take it out, hopefully I run a few rounds out of it tomorrow I picked up some defense hollow points and a 1000 rounds of federal 180 grain full jacket to plink with. I also picked up a really nice chest holster I hope will keep it far away enough from the 7000 it doesn’t give me problems? Anyone else carry a Glock or any other firearm with you out detecting, If you do carry will the coil pick it up has it affected your detector?
We go gold detecting some/all day in the bush whether it be in Vic or WA ( Oz) away from our 21'6" caravan, and for my other half, a fem with her 65th birthday just a memory, this can have some inconveniences and little privacy. On our recent trip to Tassie ( Bottom State underneath the Oz Mainland) came across a campervan whereby the young couple had mounted a Kickass Shower/loo tent on the side of their Campervan. I have mounted similar on the side of our Landcruiser. I will bring the small porta potty from our 1/2 cabin boat to do the job.
Did the Install just prior to the lockdown, ( cannot travel to Vic or WA) so have not used it yet.
If you have a 4x4 and detect with a fem or if your Campervan is not fitted out with an inside shower/loo this item may be worth thinking about.